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More About Bus Stops
I’d like to talk a little more about bus stops.. While it is the WRTA that is responsible for the buses, that responsibility generally ends at the curb. When you are waiting for a bus, you stand on real estate owned either by the City, or a corporation that owns a shopping plaza. The road that the bus travels on is controlled either by the City or the State. The City is responsible for the maintenance of its own streets, but in many cases these streets are designed by MassDOT, which is fixated on getting more cars to move more quickly. In order for you to safely board a bus, or disembark from one, you are relying on a tangled mass of elected and unelected players who all have their own ideas about what is most important. There is no integrated approach to the creation and maintenance of a bus stop.
The results of this negligence are obvious to any bus rider, but because nearly all the people in charge don’t ride the bus, they don’t know about that. Bus stops without sidewalks, without nearby crosswalks, and sometimes without signs, are not unusual. It is also not unusual for pedestrians to be struck and killed due to these deficits.
In the end, it is the City that must take responsibility for this. The City controls the streets, the curb, the sidewalks, the signage, the speed limits, and the placement of the stops. All these things are valuable assets which if correctly developed would go a long way towards making our bus system something to be proud of, rather than the embarrassment that it is.